Posted in Reviews

Review: In Love & Pajamas by Catana Chetwynd

In Love & Pajamas: A Collection of Comics about Being Yourself Together by Catana Chetwynd
Verdict: Catana continues her signature style with plenty new comics that made me smile. (PLUS THIS RHYMED!)
Expected Release: February 2, 2021

Recommended: uh, YES! 🙂
For people who like slice-of-life comics, for a trusty source of smiles, for more of Catana’s established comic style, for anyone who’s been in a long-term relationship and is familiar with the feeling of settling in and having routines

Summary

When you’ve reached that sweatpants-wearing cozy place in your relationship, it’s all In Love & Pajamas!  This brand-new collection of Catana Comics presents some fan favorites and half of the book features never-before-seen comics that delight and amuse readers of all ages.  Wholesome, sweet, feel-good humor!

Thoughts

Catana Chetwynd is a master at creating comics that feel like a slice of your own life. Not to speak for you, of course, but that certainly is the feeling for myself and many others. For example: the very first comic in this book is something that happens so frequently in my relationship that I just had to laugh when I read it. And then settled in happily for the rest.

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Posted in Book Talk

Spine Poetry – How to Love

This session of spine poetry comes off of my shelf of books from around the world. Some I’ve read already and some are still waiting, but this is one of my favorite shelves ever. 😊

Today it’s given me a bit of a first-time-in love feeling, where mistakes are made and learned from. I hope it ultimately has a more positive feeling, but you tell me!

Between shades of gray,
a love that never tires.
heart of darkness, chasing the light.
the best we could do?
the upside
of falling
down:
the art of hearing heartbeats


The story

As always with writing and especially poetry, what the author had in mind doesn’t really matter. The story is created through interaction with the viewer and has infinite possibilities. But this is what I had in mind when writing this. And I absolutely love it.

I imagine here two people who are together and work for their love. They fight, they struggle, they question if they’re right for each other. There are a lot of tears and pain, but the good times are so good that it seems like its worth the trade. They try so hard to be better, to be what they think they should be. Ultimately they can only keep trying, keep failing, and keep learning. Each time they push the other away, the ultimately learn how to bring someone closer. Every hurtful word and painful moment teaches them about each other and themselves, and in the end allows them a deep intimate knowledge. With trust and persistence, they can learn how to balance the good and the bad and when they do, their love will be dynamic and impenetrable.


Do you get a different story or tone from this? Have you read any of these books? Let me know in the comments! ✍

Posted in Release Day!

Just Published: That Can Be Arranged by Huda Fahmy!

Reminder that That Can Be Arranged: A Muslim Love Story by Huda Fahmy (⭐⭐⭐⭐) released today! Check out the full review here or grab a copy of your own at Barnes & Noble!

Recommended: Yes!
For insight into what it’s like to have a modern-day arranged marriage (note it’s not a FORCED marriage), for a funny story about finding yourself and finding love

Summary:
Chaperones, suitors, and arranged marriages aren’t only reserved for the heroines of a Jane Austen novel. They’re just another walk in the park for this leading lady, who is on a mission to find her leading lad. From the brilliant comics Yes, I’m Hot in This, Huda Fahmy tells the hilarious story of how she met and married her husband. Navigating mismatched suitors, gossiping aunties, and societal expectations for Muslim women, That Can Be Arranged deftly and hilariously reveals to readers what it can be like to find a husband as an observant Muslim woman in the twenty-first century.

Posted in Reviews

Review: Lighter by Ameena Karaja

Lighter by Ameena Karaja – ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Recommended: sure
For relatable poetry that mirrors universal feeling, for uplifting encouragement when it’s needed most, for a comforting reminder that you are not alone

Perfect representation of what’s within. ☺

Summary:
Light.er is a collection of poetry and prose that is divvied up into three parts: You, I, and We. ‘You’ contains words of empowerment and courage. ‘I’ explores the affects of living through struggles and nostalgia. ‘We’ is a combination of the two that emphasizes how similar we all are, in both happiness and grief. (*50% of all proceeds go to the MATW project; a non-profit organisation working to better the lives of the widows and orphans of Togo, Africa. You can check out their incredible work on their website: www.matwproject.org)

Thoughts:
I’ve had this collection waiting for me on my Kindle for a while, and was saving it for a day when I knew I needed it. That day recently came, and I was happy to find this set here waiting for me. The cover in this case perfectly sets the expectation of what is inside. The poetry within is very light and warm, and cleverly divided into sections of “you,” “I,” and “we” with themes to match. It’s a very clever setup, and executed well.

My favorite touch was the dashes at the end of some poems that seemed to serve almost as a postscript, or an author’s signature. They often added some humour or sweetness to the poems themselves. Sometimes they even shifted the mood of it overall and you would have a very different message without them.

Some of these didn’t make much sense to me or seemed a bit contradictory to themselves, but it’s easy enough to let go and enjoy despite that when you embrace the sweetness of this set. It’s truly created as a gift to others, as evident in the author’s note. I sincerely appreciate the work that went into this and the kindness in sending it out into the world. A perfect collection to turn to on any day, but especially one where you need a friend and some kind words.